Brian, Age 12, Easton, CT

My family and I had to travel all the way to Rhode Island to pick up our new puppy. She was a yellow lab and we just knew she was going to be a great dog. We had so much fun on the car ride home with her, and we still have a great time playing with her and teaching her new tricks.

The ride home with a dog in the car was very entertaining. We had prepared a tub for her with three towels, a bone and a ball. We placed the tub in the middle of the back seat, wedged between my older brother Adam and me. She smelled like corn chips and looked a bit chubby. This was due to the skin she hadn’t grown into yet. We had a great laugh when she tumbled onto us when she tried to get out of the tub. When she did this, she would stand on us until we picked her up with one hand (that was how small she was), and placed her on our laps. The trip was two hours long, so we played “pass the puppy.” After about one hour, we found the perfect name for her. Carly. We spent the rest of the time calling her name and giving her the bone to chew on. We already loved her. Once we got home we hugged her and played with her so much that before long, it was time to go to bed. The moment we all left the room, she started to cry and bark. We figured that this was because s he missed her mom and 10 brothers and sisters. We stayed up all night because of her, but after that night, she never did it again.

We always have a great time playing with Carly. We buy her lots of toys and she is usually able to demolish them. Carly is a Labrador Retriever. Even though she retrieves things, she doesn’t give them back or drop them. She teases us, too. She’ll drop a toy just out of our reach. Then, the moment we lunge for it, she quickly snags it and jumps away. She does it again and again until we get the toy. We get back at her, though. We scare her, sneak up behind her, and then make a sound and start running after her. She can never be caught, though. She can get up to her high speed in about three seconds, especially outside where she has lots of traction and room. She is always really excited and this makes her a good playmate.

Carly knows lots of tricks. She memorizes these tricks because she gets food for doing them. She loves eating kibbles, carrots, ice, cheese (mozzarella and American), and turkey. Whenever we take out one of these treats, Carly goes straight into her trick routine. She sits down, shakes her paw, gives us a high five (with two paws), does “raise the roof” (a standing high five), and following that, she lands with a heavy thud on the ground. Then Carly crawls forward, jumps up onto all fours, spins 360 degrees twice, rolls over, and completes this combination she knows as “break dance”. Carly has another trick she’s working on - smiling! She hasn’t mastered this trick yet, though. Whenever Carly has her mouth open and we tell her to smile, she closes her mouth just enough to show her crooked little teeth. It looks a bit scary but we tell her “Nice smile Carly!” and she gets really happy. We’ve tried to take a picture of her doing this , but she gets too obsessed with the camera and tries to lick it.

Anyway, these are just some of the things I could mention about my favorite pet, Carly. She’s become such a fun part of our family, and I don’t know what we would do without her. The best thing about her is that she makes us all laugh, even if we’ve had a bad day.

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